Cheaters never prosper -- or at least, they certainly don’t in this episode.
A rundown of all the cheaters’ status by the end of last night:
Annalise: She says she’s barren because of it. And she’s probably married to a murderer.
Laurel: Implicated in a murder.
Nate: Lost his job.
Bonnie: Just a kiss, but she’s still fired.
Frank: Juggling two girls.
Husband of client: With an STD and a murder charge.
Cheating does not payoff in this show.
As for the play-by-play, we open with a flashback to Lila Stangard’s point of view, which will pepper the episode instead of flash forwards. They’re casually doing cocaine on the sorority house’s roof, and Lila has just started seeing Sam.
Back in the almost present, and Bonnie is delivering the bombshell pregnancy news. Annalise decides to let Bonnie in on the Sam affair fun, so that she has a witness to him potentially lying or confessing to know about the pregnancy. Poor Bonnie -- this is pretty darn awkward, as well as soul-crushing since Sam didn’t decide to cheat with her.
After dressing down Sam for taking Lila’s virginity and potentially impregnating her, Annalise asks him whether or not he knew she was pregnant, as that would be motive for murder. Sam promises up and down that he didn’t know. He also promised he wasn’t having an affair, promised to be faithful to his first wife, and promised he was at Yale the night of the murder -- so yes, his promises mean THE world.
Annalise releases the final zinger of the conversation, saying “You should have worn a condom.” By the end of the episode, pretty much everyone should have taken this advice.
The case of the week is a Stepford housewife real estate broker who allegedly stabbed her nanny to death in her sleep under the influence of a powerful sleeping medication. For everyone’s enjoyment, the maid’s name is Elka.
Back at Keating HQ, Annalise tells Wes that Lila was pregnant, and then asks him not to tell Rebecca. When Wes asks why in the world she would tell him this, she says, “I learned my lesson about keeping secrets from you.” Yeah, right.
Wes, and we, totally see through this -- and yet puppy eyes promptly tells Rebecca, most definitely playing into whatever Annalise’s grand plan is. Rebecca takes this info and shares it with Nate, who asks her to snag one of Sam’s hairs for a DNA test. She fails to execute this in her first pass at the Keating household, which leads her to a second try the night of Sam’s murder.
In our next flashback, we learn that Sam is a good lover with a large *ahem* package. And that Lila likes to think his wife never put out. Probably because she had hot Nate on the side, but hey -- who really knows.
In the case of the week (which none of us really care about since we are so close to learning who killed Sam), it comes out on the stand that Elka was sleeping with the teenage son. Annalise is rightfully mad to be blind-sided, and takes it out on Connor and Bonnie. Her “can you only do your job when you are screwing evidence out of someone” and “pathetic mousy ass in my house” lines are BRUTAL. This woman knows how to throw an insult.
Back at work in the Keating household, Connor, Laurel, and Wes form a steady group, and Laurel and Frank get hot and steamy in the car outside. As a side note, do small cars grow for TV sex scenes? There’s no way the backseat of that car was that large.
Asher sweettalks Bonnie, saying Annalise shouldn’t have been so mean to her. Bonnie starts to confront Sam, but they get interrupted by Annalise. She proceeds to rip herself apart to Sam, saying it’s her fault she’s barren since she slept with a married man. While the scene is heart-breaking, as obviously Annalise is not to blame for her husband’s cheating (and potentially murderous) ways, you do have to remember she’s speaking about two men -- Sam and Nate.
In our second-to-last flashback, Lila is upset that Sam wants to end things. She wants to come clean to Annalise to hurt him, and Rebecca manages to be a decent friend by hanging out with her. As a side note, who thinks it’s a good idea to do hard drugs on a roof where you constantly sit on the edge? Or let an obviously depressed girl hang out up there?
For the case of the week, Michaela figures out that Elka was two-timing on the Dad with the son, which makes her believe she is entitled to the trophy and also reinforces that no one is faithful to each other on this show.
Annalise takes down the father in court, and his wife retaliates by yelling at Annalise. She tells her client (and herself): “That burn you feel right now is not because of what I did but because of what he did. He lied to you, betrayed you, took advantage of your loyalty and trust, and that’s unforgivable. You’ll thank me one day.”
This case, and her personal life, has taken about all Annalise has to give. Professor Keating can barely formulate a thought when Michaela accosts her about the trophy, saying she doesn’t care who has it. She’s got bigger things to worry about.
And then, Michaela’s future mother-in-law appears out of no where to shake the unshakeable law student down. A few questions: how does she know where Michaela works? Where is Aiden? Also, could she be more brutal? “A sports-driven university” and “I’ll send you back to the backwood Bayou you came from” are lovely sentiments coming from your future mother-in-law. Michaela manages to stand up for herself, and decides to steal the trophy from Asher afterward as a sign of her pluckiness.
Mid-makeout on Frank’s floor, poor Laurel finds out she’s not the only woman in Frank’s life -- turns out he has a girlfriend. Awkward. As a reminder though, Laurel has a boyfriend on the side as well, just in case you forgot.
Bonnie comes clean to Sam on meeting Lila the night she was killed, as Lila had supposedly wanted to tell Annalise about the pregnancy. Sam plays on Bonnie’s obvious desire for him, and kisses her to make her keep quiet about him being the one that knocked Lila up.
The final conversation that Bonnie has with Annalise might be the most heartbreaking of the season. We see our two strongest female characters break down in tears over the man they both love. There’s some weird kneeling stuff, and we don’t totally understand the adoration Bonnie has for Annalise, but it’s one helluva a scene.
Annalise ends up lashing out at Bonnie because she delivers the horrible news that Sam knew Lila was pregnant, and that he kissed her. Annalise then FIRES Bonnie, proving she should have taken her own advice earlier in the episode about misplaced blame.
The final five minutes of this show show how everyone shows up to the Keating house for the impending murder.
Wes sees Rebecca meet with Nate, and suspects Annalise is using Rebecca through her boyfriend. Excellent theory puppy eyes -- could Nate actually be working with Annalise to take down Sam?
Connor and Laurel appear at Wes’ place to study for finals, while Michaela goes to Asher’s to steal the trophy. Wes realizes Rebecca is going to Sam’s house, and cons Connor and Laurel into driving him over. And in the final minute, we see Annalise in her house as everyone is headed to the Keating household.
Ready for the final bombshell? Annalise tells Sam she’s instructed the DA’s office to collect DNA from all the men in Lila’s life -- including her teachers.
This leaves us with the all-consuming question that will finally be answered next week: who killed Sam?
Could it be Annalise? Did she manipulate some of her students to kill him or do the dirty deed herself? Did Nate hear the commotion and break in to save Annalise? Did Wes see Sam hurting Rebecca and come to her defense? Did Rebecca retaliate in self-defense? Are Michaela and Connor collateral damage?
Let us know what you think in the comments below!Odds and Ends
- Could Sam try to kill Annalise, and her students save her?
- Is Aiden financing Michaela’s lifestyle? Why did she switch from pre-med to law? And where did she meet Aiden?
- “Moment in the sun” is definitely a line borrowed from “Scandal.”
- It’s a great piece of foreshadowing when Michaela says she’s going to bash Asher’s face in with the trophy.
- The classroom scene left a little to be desired this week. “Thinking, thoughtful human beings” -- Annalise, you can teach better than THAT.
- Wes maybe wore his first non-plaid shirt.
- The grandma’s love for court tv was fantastically meta.
- Asher line of the week: “jammy jam”
"How to Get Away With Murder" airs on Thursdays at 10 p.m. EDT on ABC.
CORRECTION: An earlier version misidentified Lila as the person Annalise tells Wes not to tell about Lila's pregnancy. It was Rebecca.